Shaun Marcum goes three innings in first minor league rehab start

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Shaun Marcum has missed nearly two months due with an elbow injury, but he’s finally getting closer to rejoining the Brewers’ starting rotation.

Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports that Marcum allowed one run over three innings tonight in his first rehab start with Class A Wisconsin. The only hit he allowed was a solo homer. He struck out three, walked none and threw 28 out of 36 pitches for strikes.

According to Brewers media relations director Mike Vassallo, Marcum will make his next rehab start Wednesday. Barring any setbacks, it’s possible he could be activated after that.

Marcum, 31, was 5-3 with a 3.39 ERA and 77/26 K/BB ratio in 82 1/3 innings through 13 starts prior to being placed on the disabled list. He is poised to hit free agency this offseason.

Tom Ricketts says the Cubs don’t have any more money

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Cubs owner Tom Ricketts met the media in Mesa, Arizona today and said a couple of things that were fun.

First, he addressed the controversy that arose earlier this month when emails of his father’s — family patriarch Joe Ricketts — were leaked, showing him forwarding and approvingly commenting on racist jokes. Ricketts apologized for those serving as a “distraction” for the Cubs which, OK. He also said “Those aren’t the values our family was raised with… I never heard my father say anything remotely racist.” If you choose to believe that a 77-year-old conservative guy who loves racist emails — who once spearheaded an anti-Obama ad campaign that required a “literate African-American” as its spokesman — hasn’t said racist stuff a-plenty, that’s between you and your credulity.

More relevant to the 2019 Cubs is this:

The Cubs aren’t in the same position as some other contenders in that (a) they don’t have a cheap payroll; and (b) are not obvious candidates for the big free agents like Harper or Machado, but I still find that comment pretty rich for an owner of one of baseball’s marquee franchises in a non-salary cap league. If nothing else, it’s an admission by Ricketts that he, like the other owners, consider the Luxury Tax to be a defacto salary cap.